The Asian Age – Mark Tully gets lifetime achievement award for role in UK-India ties

The annual UK-India Awards celebrates special talents and organisations who use their worldwide influence to strengthen UK-India ties.

London – UK, 29 June 2019. Veteran British journalist Sir Mark Tully was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award in London for his contributions to the UK-India relationship.

Tully, the former Bureau Chief of the BBC, New Delhi, received a standing ovation on Friday from the gathering as he said that being in India was his karma. “I owe a great debt to India and I have been rewarded way beyond my expectations,” said 83-year-old Tully, who has been previously knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in the UK and conferred with the Padma Bhushan in India.

The annual UK-India Awards, which celebrate special talents and organisations who use their worldwide influence to strengthen UK-India ties, included wins for British Telecom (BT) in the Social Impact category and Indian hospitality start-up Oyo in the Market Entrant of the Year category.

While British Indian actor Kunal Nayyar, best known for his role as Rajesh Koothrappali on the US sitcom The Big Bang Theory, was named Global Indian Icon of the Year, Indian-origin peer and Cobra Beer founder Lord Karan Bilimoria were presented with a special Significant Contribution to UK-India Relations Award.

“The UK is a wonderful global power and if there is a special relationship, it is with India,” said Karan Bilimoria.

The start-up of the Year Award, sponsored by Indian software services major Infosys, was won by Maanch, a new platform that matches up funders and receivers to accelerate global sustainable development.

“Maanch is an impact technology and it is designed to really bring the world together for sustainability so that we can invest and give money in a way that has the highest impact. An award like this is an important validation because technologies like these are new,” said Founder and CEO Darshita Gillies.

The awards marked the conclusion of the annual UK-India Week, which kicked off on Monday with the first-ever India Day in the Houses of Parliament in London.

Some of the other winners of the night included Fund of the Year for SoftBank Investment Advisers, Law Firm of the Year for the UK”s Baker McKenzie, Trade and Investment Promotion Agency of the Year for Manchester India Partnership, Deal of the Year for EverSource Capital/ Lightsource BP and Finance Organisation of the Year for AXIS Bank Limited.

The UK-India Awards, now in their third year, were selected by an all-women judging panel for the first time, including Director and Chief Counsel of Rolls-Royce plc Deborah D’Aubney and prominent Indian-origin anti-Brexit campaigner Gina Miller.

“All the winners and nominees are inspirational figures at the cutting edge of technology, innovation, business, international relations and culture, who are doing amazing work in making that UK-India partnership a truly winning one,” said Manoj Ladwa, Founder & CEO of India Inc. – the organisation behind the awards. – Kartarpur Corridor Project: India asks Pakistan to choose new date for meeting

Sikh24 Editors

New Delhi – India, 30 June 2019. The Union government of India has presented a proposal to the Pakistan government for fixing a new date to pursue talks on Kartarpur corridor. According to a letter sent by the Indian Foreign Ministry, the Pakistani Foreign Ministry has been asked to choose dates between July 11 and July 14 to hold a meeting at the Wagah border station.

Till now, conversation between two countries on technical aspects of this corridor has taken place three times. If the Pakistan government accepts this proposal, then the issues of security and conveniently commuting the devotees to Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib might be discussed in the next meeting.

According to information availed by the Indian Foreign Ministry, the next meeting might also end up discussion on the type of infrastructure facility to be given to Sikh devotees.

It is noteworthy here that the Indian government is building an international level terminal and a four lane state highway in this project whose 45% work has been finished.

The Kartarpur corridor is set to open in November, 2019 so that the Sikh devotees can go to Gurdwara Sri Kartarpur Sahib to celebrate the 550th birthday of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji.

Kartarpur Corridor Project: India asks Pakistan to choose new date for meeting

Gent Zuid – Gentbrugge – Melle Leeuw

Gent Zuid
20 June 2019

PCC Car on line 4 service to Gentbrugge Stelplaats

USA Coach
21 June 2019

American Coach

Front view

The forward ‘leaning’ windows suggest speed !

Melle Leeuw
Terminus of Tram 2
21 June 2019

New platform for arriving trams

More Belgian pictures to be published
Harjinder Singh
Man in Blue

The Quint – BJP backs rapist Ram Rahim’s parole: A recap of their close ties

Chandigarh – Haryana – India, 01 July 2019. The BJP government in Haryana appears to have come out in support of giving parole to rape convicted godman Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh Insan of the Dera Sacha Sauda. Haryana’s Jail Minister Krishan Lal Panwar has said that parole is Ram Rahim’s right if his conduct is good.

Along with Panwar, Haryana’s minister for health and sports affairs Anil Vij is also reported to have supported giving parole to Ram Rahim citing his “good behaviour”.

Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has said that “no final decision” had been taken on the matter but asserted that “seeking parole is the right of every prisoner”.

The view of the Haryana government is at variance with the Punjab and Haryana High Court which said that giving parole to Ram Rahim could lead to a law and order problem in the two states. And legally the BJP’s argument that “parole is the right of every prisoner” doesn’t hold if it is likely to cause law and order problems.

So why is the BJP going soft on a rapist like Ram Rahim? The answer could possibly lie in the party’s political compulsions ahead of the Haryana Assembly elections due later this year.

Ram Rahim’s Dera Sacha Sauda is said to have supported the BJP and its allies in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the Haryana Assembly elections later that year, the 2017 Assembly polls in Punjab and the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

The Dera enjoys considerable influence in Haryana and Punjab, particularly among a section of Dalits and this makes it a crucial player during elections. Not just BJP, its ally Shiromani Akali Dal and the Congress have also hobnobbed with Ram Rahim at some point of time or the other.

But since the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the Dera has consistently been supporting the BJP and the SAD. The BJP, too, has reciprocated by showering praise on Ram Rahim at various forums.

For instance in 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised Ram Rahim’s efforts in promoting the Swachh Bharat Mission. This is despite the fact that at that time Ram Rahim was still being tried for raping two women.

In a rally during the Haryana Assembly election campaign, Prime Minister Modi openly praised Ram Rahim once again. In that election, Ram Rahim is said to have issued a clear diktat to his followers to support the BJP.

According to reports, BJP president helped seal the deal with Ram Rahim. The report said that Shah met Ram Rahim in the first week of October and “sought his blessings” for the Assembly elections in Haryana.

The report said that six days after the meeting with Shah, BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya took 44 BJP candidates for the Haryana polls to meet the Dera chief for his “blessings”. Several leaders of the Haryana BJP were known to be close to Ram Rahim.

The most prominent among them is state minister Ram Bilas Sharma. There is a video in which Sharma can be seen prostrating in front of Ram Rahim. He also donated Rs 51 lakh to the Dera but later withdrew the donation after facing public criticism.

When Dera supporters went on rampage after Ram Rahim’s conviction, Sharma described them as “peace-loving people who wouldn’t even harm a plant”. He even went to the extent of saying that Section 144 being imposed didn’t apply to Dera supporters.

The other major backer of Ram Rahim in the Haryana BJP is of course the same minister supporting his parole: Anil Vij. health minister Anil Vij. In 2016, Vij donated Rs 50 lakh from state funds to Ram Rahim’s sports project.

Another minister, Manish Grover, donated Rs 11 lakh to the Dera from his discretionary fund.

The BJP’s cosy relationship with Ram Rahim extends to chief minister Khattar as well. He can be seen taking part in Dera Sacha Sauda’s cleanliness campaign here.

And here is KL Panwar, who is now batting for Ram Rahim’s parole, at the same event.

The BJP has been quite open about its support for Ram Rahim, despite his conviction in the rape case. Even in the run-up to the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Manohar Lal Khattar said that he will seek support from Dera Sacha Sauda.

The Dera is said to have supported the NDA in the Lok Sabha elections, contributing to the BJP’s sweep in Haryana and the Akali Dal’s victory in the Bathinda and Ferozepur Lok Sabha seats.

With the Haryana Assembly elections due in a few months time, it is not surprising that the BJP is once again bending over backwards to appease the Dera. But it remains to be seen what it means for the Akalis, who are facing flak in Punjab after the Ranjit Singh commission has reportedly found the Badals and the Dera of being behind the sacrilege incidents of 2015.

To read the full article, including tweets and pictures go to :

Dawn – Anti-Narcotics Force arrests Rana Sanaullah from Islamabad-Lahore motorway

Tahir Naseer

Sukheke Mandi – Panjab – Pakistan, 01 July 2019. PML-N Punjab President Rana Sanaullah Khan was arrested on Monday by the Anti Narcotics Force’s (ANF) Lahore team while he was traveling from Faisalabad to Lahore, sources in the ANF confirmed to DawnNewsTV.

The senior PML-N leader was arrested from the Islamabad-Lahore motorway near the Sukheki area, the sources said.

The ANF has not officially specified the charges on which Sanaullah has been picked up. An official statement on the charges will be issued soon, a source said.

PML-N leader Attaullah Tarrar told reporters that he had contacted Sanullah today. According to him, the PML-N provincial president was about to leave the Sukheki area to attend a meeting in Lahore. The former provincial law minister was appointed president of PML-N Punjab in May this year.

PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif strongly condemned the arrest and said that Sanaullah was arrested without any allegation and case against him. He termed it the worst example of “lawlessness and political revenge”.

Sharif alleged that it was another example of using state institutions against political opponents. He demanded of the government to produce Sanaullah before a court of law. PML-N Vice President Maryam Nawaz blamed Prime Minister Imran Khan for the arrest, accusing him of being “directly behind” the arrest.

This is a developing story that is being updated as the situation evolves. Initial reports in the media can sometimes be inaccurate. We will strive to ensure timeliness and accuracy by relying on credible sources such as concerned, qualified authorities and our staff reporters.